I decided that for Mother's Day, I wanted to bake a cheesecake after I saw this recipe on another food blog What the Fruitcake?! Mandy made an incredibly beautiful "zebra patterned" triple chocolate cheesecake by dividing the batter into 3 equal portions, flavoring each portion with melted dark, milk and white chocolates, then alternately pouring the batters into the centre of the pan. The result was stunning and I was inspired. I went to Bernard Callebaut, bought the chocolate, prepared the pan and the crust the night before so I could just get down to business the next morning, and then promptly pulled a muscle in my right shoulder that radiated pain up my neck and all the way down my right arm. Awesome! What are the chances? You really need your arm to mix the batter to the right "pouring" consistency because once the chocolate was added, it set, making the batter too stiff to pour freely which is necessary in order to achieve the 'zebra' pattern. Despite the pain, I persevered. I put the batter over a pan of simmering water and I stirred and stirred and stirred, and then when the pain was intolerable and I was ready to toss the entire project into the garbage, I admitted defeat, and settled for a marbled effect. It's not that I think my cheesecake isn't somewhat pretty, but it's no show-stopper. You really must check out Mandy's version, then you will understand my disappointment.
Luckily, this minor mishap did not compromise the flavor of the cheesecake. It was deliciously rich and creamy and, of course, very chocolatey. I'm still a fan of the plain old vanilla cheesecake with a fresh fruit topping, but this was a nice change. Mandy's version is decorated with chocolate shavings on top, but like I said, I was in a bad place. I'm just happy this cake made it into the oven, to be perfectly honest. And being that the marbled effect is best seen on the top of the cake, I didn't see any reason to cover it up with more chocolate. One day I may re-visit this recipe and make another attempt at the zebra pattern. But for now, here's the instructions for my "Plan B" marbled cheesecake.
Recipe for Triple Chocolate Cheesecake
(source: What the Fruitcake?! blog)
200 grams Disgestive Cookies
1/4 c. brown sugar
115 grams butter
2 T. cocoa
Blend cookies to a fine crumb. Melt butter, add to cookie crumbs along with the sugar and cocoa. Mix until well-blended. Press into the bottom of prepared pan. (See below)
4 x 225 grams packages of cream cheese (room temp.)
4 eggs (room temp.)
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 c. cream (room temp.)
1 T. lemon juice (I omitted)
1 t. vanilla (I used 1 T.)
100 grams of dark chocolate
100 grams of milk chocolate
100 grams of white chocolate
1/2 t. salt
Preheat oven to 330 degrees (no, that's not a typo). Carefully butter a 9 inch springform pan all the way to top. Wrap bottom with 2 layers of foil so no water seeps in. The foil should come 2 inches up the side of the pan. Prepare crust.
With mixer, cream the cheese till smooth. Add sugar, mix till combined. With mixer on low, add eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly and scraping the sides of the bowl after each addition. Add cream, vanilla, lemon and salt. Mix till smooth. Divide into 3 bowls.
Melt each chocolate separately, allowing to cool slightly. Thoroughly mix dark chocolate into first bowl. Thoroughly mix milk chocolate into 2nd bowl. Thoroughly mix white chocolate into 3rd bowl.
Add one cup of batter at a time to the pan, alternating between the different chocolates.
Using a knife, swirl the batter until you achieve a marbled effect. Don't over-mix, or you'll lose the effect altogether. Place cake pan into larger roasting pan and place into preheated oven. Pour enough hot water into larger roasting pan to come up about 1 1/2 inches of the cheesecake pan. Bake for an hour and 15 minutes. The cake should be firm around the outside but still jiggly in the centre. Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake in the oven for an additional hour. The cake will continue to bake but it also gently cools in the oven, preventing cracking.
After the hour, remove cake from the oven, and remove pan from the water bath. Allow to cool on the counter top until it reaches room temperature. Chill in fridge for several hours, or preferably over night to allow the flavors to develop and the cake to set.